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May 17, 2008

Loete earns another All-America award

2008 Daktronics All-America team (pdf.)

Sara Loete

EVANSVILLE, Ind.University of Southern Indiana sophomore designated player Sara Loete (Pekin, Illinois) was named to the Daktronics All-America second team in a vote by the sports information directors, marking the second time in less than a week that she has earned All-America honors.

Loete, who earned first-team Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-America honors Tuesday, was selected to the Daktronics All-America squad after leading the Screaming Eagles and the GLVC with a single-season school record 54 RBIs, surpassing Pat Snell's 30-year old school record of 50.

She is the first USI softball player in school history to earn two All-America awards in a single season and the first to earn any All-America honors since 1998. She joins Trisha Poling (1998 NFCA first team), Amber Huse (1994 NFCA first team/1995 second team), and Lori Leonard (1995 third team) as the only players in the program's history to earn All-America accolades.

Loete also was one of two players from the GLVC and one of three players from the Great Lakes Region to be recognized on the Daktronics All-America team. She was the only player from the GLVC and one of two players from the Great Lakes Region to be recognized on the NFCA All-America team.

In her first season at USI, Loete became the second player in school history to reach the double-digit mark in home runs in a single season. Her 10 round-trippers as well as her 64 hits ranked second in the GLVC, while her team-high .405 batting average was fourth in the conference.

Loete's batting average was the highest by a USI player since Trisha Poling hit .451 in 1998. In addition to All-America honors, Loete was a first-team All-GLVC selection, a first-team Daktronics All-Great Lakes Region selection, and a first-team Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-Great Lakes Region selection. She also is on the ballot for the Daktronics All-America team, which scheduled to be announced Friday afternoon.

"Sara has been a tremendous addition to our program," Head Coach Sue Kunkle said. "She has developed into one of the most talented hitters that we have ever coached."

"Loete will continue to excel at this level and will most certainly be one of Division II's most feared offensive players," Kunkle continued. "At the plate, Sara has a great eye for good pitches and will always come through in key situations."

The Screaming Eagles finished the 2008 season with a 31-23 overall mark, 14-10 in the GLVC. The 31 wins marked the fourth consecutive season and the 10th time in 12 years that USI has reached the 30-win plateau.

Dan McDonnell,
USI Sports Information

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